Archive for marriage

Prepare for Marriage, Not Just a Wedding

In America, people spend a lot of time and money getting ready for weddings. However, couples spend much less time, getting ready for marriage. Preparing for marriage can provide you with the foundation to build and grow a healthy marriage.

An engaged couple has to make a lot of decisions about their life as a married couple. Where will they live? How will they handle finances? Do they want to have children? Premarital preparation can help them learn how to discuss these issues in more positive and effective ways. In fact, according to a 2006 article in the Journal of Family Psychology, couples who participated in premarital education experienced higher levels of marital satisfaction and commitment and lower levels of conflict.  There is no recipe to guarantee a strong marriage but learning about the right ingredients can help couples begin their life as husband and wife with mutual respect and confidence in their future.

There is lots of material out there that suggests different questions couples should ask each other before marriage. Questions are good. Questions let people get to know one another better. Questions also get couples talking and communicating. Good communication is essential for a healthy marriage. Marriage education can teach people better communication skills and much more. Marriage education isn’t just for people who are already married. Learning skills early can help enhance marriage during the great times and help sustain marriage during the hard times. People say, “A good marriage takes lots of hard work.” Learning solid skills early through premarital education can make it a whole lot easier.

2010 Marriage Awards Videos

In 2010 we held an event celebrating healthy marriages.  At this event we gave awards to married couples who based on community nominations and a screening process exemplify healthy, long term marriage.  Here are videos by those recipients sharing what has helped make their marriages work.















Relationship Facts

From Why Marriage Matters, 2nd Edition.

Among the research findings summarized by the report are:

About Children

  • Parental divorce reduces the likelihood that children will graduate from college, and achieve high-status jobs.
  • Children who live with their own two married parents enjoy better physical health, on average, than children in other family forms. The health advantages of married homes remain even after taking into account socioeconomic status.
  • Parental divorce approximately doubles the odds that adult children will end up divorced.

About Men

  • Married men earn between 10 and 40 percent more than single men with similar education and job histories.
  • Married people, especially married men, have longer life expectancies than otherwise similar singles.
  • Marriage increases the likelihood fathers will have good relationships with children.  Sixty-five percent of young adults whose parents divorced had poor relationships with their fathers (compared to 29% from non-divorced families).

About Women

  • Divorce and unmarried childbearing significantly increases poverty rates of both mothers and children. Between one-fifth and one-third of divorcing women end up in poverty as a result of divorce.
  • Married mothers have lower rates of depression than single or cohabiting mothers.
  • Married women appear to have a lower risk of domestic violence than cohabiting or dating women. Even after controlling for race, age, and education, people who live together are still three times more likely to report violent arguments than married people.

About Society

  • Adults who live together but do not marry—cohabitors—are more similar to singles than to married couples in terms of physical health and disability, emotional well-being and mental health, as well as assets and earnings.  Their children more closely resemble the children of single people than the children of married people.
  • Marriage appears to reduce the risk that children and adults will be either perpetrators or victims of crime. Single and divorced women are four to five times more likely to be victims of violent crime in any given year than married women. Boys raised in single-parent homes are about twice as likely (and boys raised in stepfamilies three times as likely) to have committed a crime that leads to incarceration by the time they reach their early thirties, even after controlling for factors such as race, mother’s education, neighborhood quality and cognitive ability.